Let Innovative Service Transform Your Business
The lake house started its life as a one-room schoolhouse moved to waters edge as a fishing cabin on Cedar Creek Lake in East Texas. The septic system was a 50-gallon drum and a twelve-foot drain field (the length a small backhoe can reach)! Over the years various owners enlarged and improved the cabin. We bought it in a fire sale and decided to refurbish it so everything was up to code and modern, including smart-home features, a two-car carport, cathedral ceilings, fireplaces, and an industrial strength kitchen—and a large spa. After a few bids, we hit the jackpot with Richard Goins.
When he brought out his drawings and estimate he signaled the forthcoming sticker shock by asking, “Have you taken your big pill this morning?” When we said yes, he repeated: “I mean your really big pill?” We groaned and agreed to do the deal.
Customers do not talk or tweet about good service anymore. They remark only about service that is value-unique, unexpected, and remarkable.
That’s when we learned how innovative service trumps just good service. Richard found us a rental house nearby so when we came to the lake (90 minutes from our home in Dallas) we could continue to enjoy fishing and check on the refurbishing progress. He located a mover to shift our furniture to the rental house and a local farmer to periodically check on our house at night and direct his shotgun at the armadillos that enjoyed gutting our new manicured yard. He sent us photos weekly of his progress along with detailed diagrams of his work. He made us smart!
But, here is the best part. We wanted to add a small separate building (connected by a breezeway) for a ten-foot square sunken hot tub spa with a panoramic view of the lake. Richard involved a structural engineer and horticulturist (on his nickel) to offer advice on the unique construction needed. It required pouring a deep concrete foundation, erecting a steel beam frame, installing the tub, and then building the room around it without damaging the roots of the 100 year old oak trees nearby.
Customers do not talk or tweet about good service anymore. They remark only about service that is value-unique, unexpected, and remarkable. Given the power today of word of mouse (social media) over word of mouth, get your customers talking, not just about the great refurbishment outcome you create, but the delightful, innovative process they experience!
Chip R. Bell is a renowned keynote speaker and the author of several national best-selling books. His newest book is the just-released Kaleidoscope: Delivering Innovative Service That Sparkles.
He will be a keynote speaker at the 2017 NARI conference in Scottsdale. He can be reached at chipbell.com.
See Chip Bell in person April 6th, 2017. Register Now for NARI Spring Business Meeting 2017. Early bird registration ends 2/15/17.